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Economic and dam related articles

Heavy Lifting and More to Come

by Kelly Kearsley
The News Tribune, February 1, 2006

Last year was a banner year for the Port of Tacoma.

Fueled by surges in international trade and diverted cargo from Southern California, the port posted a range of records, from the number of containers passing through Tacoma to total tonnage of grain shipped to Asia. In the midst of the growth the port spent $95 million on construction projects, including three new or renovated marine terminals.

"Overall, it was a fantastic year," Tim Farrell, the port's executive director, said Tuesday.

The hiring of hundreds of new longshore workers was key in managing that growth, he said. So were new efficiencies in transporting the goods, such as increasing the lengths of trains leaving the port from 6,000 feet to 7,000 feet.

And all this growth won't be stopping any time soon. To keep up, the port plans on accelerating construction projects aimed at keeping cargo moving in and out quickly.

Here's a review of the port's record year by the numbers: